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Stress and Time Management Need of the Hour

Akhil Shahani

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A corporate setting or home office, no matter where you are - for an entrepreneur, stress is de rigueur. There's simply no escaping it! Stress can be described as anything that disturbs your overall sense of well being. While work overload, de-motivation, professional setback or plain lack of physical exercise can all lead to stress, the most common cause is the dreaded D-word “deadline"! Therefore, today's entrepreneur needs to practice both stress and time management in the interest of self preservation.

Among other things, an entrepreneur is under constant pressure to generate income to maintain the financial health of the business, and that's as sure a recipe for stress as any. While some stress is good as a motivational factor, staying in overdrive 24x7 will lead only to anxiety and frustration. Sooner or later one has to either eliminate stress from one's life, or learn to deal with it. This is where stress and time management come to the rescue.

Learn to manage time. Before you leave home for work, plan your day's schedule in advance. This will help you gear up for your daily business activities. Work on the most important or difficult tasks during “prime time". Make an effort to do things right on the first attempt. Efficiency at work means wasting less time and effort, and also means lower stress. If telephone calls are an annoying interruption during business hours, turn on the answering machine so that you are on-duty but off-call. While you should work to a well oiled schedule, keep it flexible enough to attend to emergencies or special events. When you make sure everything is planned for the day, you will worry less, and be in control.

Identify time wasters. Spot your four or five big time-wasters and develop ways to beat them. For example, casual telephone calls and visitors, chit chat, excessive paperwork, procrastination, failure to delegate, unclear objectives, poor scheduling and lack of self-discipline, are all time stealers. Deal with them to avoid stress.

Keep in touch with people. If you run a work-at-home business, then this is for you. A home alone job might be your dream, but remember, it comes with being alone, and that can be tough to handle. Balance your solitariness with work-related or social activities that provide frequent contact with others. This will keep your morale high - the best stress buster in the world!

Make physical fitness a priority. You need a well exercised body and mind to be able to think creatively. Losing yourself in an enjoyable physical activity is the best way to escape the grind. Jogging, brisk walking, team sports - take your pick. If you can't afford to go on vacation, at least take a day off at times.

Separate your place of work from home. Your home and office may exist under one roof, but ensure that there are “walls" between them. No doubt, using a cardboard box as a file cabinet will save you a few dollars, but not having a proper work space and supplies not only wastes time but also creates stress. Therefore, designing an adequate work area is essential to both stress and time management. Ensure you have a separate business area, with a dedicated entrance for customers. Consciously entering an area solely designated for work separates “being at home" from “being at the office. " A piece of good news for you - added to the mental and physical comfort of having a separate office, you can claim tax deductions from the IRS.

Take care of yourself. Having yourself as the BOSS can be exciting, fulfilling and rewarding. Yet, it can get lonely and stressful. Therefore, learn to balance your personal and professional life. It's your business after all, and solely depends on your well being to survive!

If you're still looking for some advice, check out the following. The folks at provide training programs and counseling to managers and business owners on stress and time management. Books like “Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity" from and “Eat That Frog! 21 Great Ways to Stop Procrastinating and Get More Done in Less Time" on can be of great help. Stress and time management related e-books are also available at

Resolve to deal with stress today!

Hi, I'm Akhil Shahani, a serial entrepreneur who wants to help you succeed. If you like to work smart, check out It's full of articles and resources to help you start and grow your business successfully. Please visit us & download our special “Freebie of The Month" at

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